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Feedback for Newbie
natchez
Hi all. I have just begun roasting my own coffee and I can't wait to learn more about the craft & develop my skills. I just roasted my first beans last night and problems/questions aside (see below), I was floored by how amazing the coffee was this morning. I see why this is a passion for so many folks, and am excited to dive down the rabbit hole. But anyway, why I'm posting:

I did a lot of reading and research before starting, as is my style, and ended up getting this air popper as a cheap way to get started: https://vkpbrands.com/store/popair-air-popper.html . It has the solid bottom/side vent configuration that everyone seems to recommend. And in the Amazon reviews for it, a lot of people mentioned successfully using it for coffee. For my first beans, I used these https://www.sweetmarias.com/rwanda-yellow-honey-kanyege-6732.html , a fairly small (to my inexpert eyes, at least) honey-processed bean. The problems/questions:

-The beans simply did not swirl at all at the beginning of the roast. I started with about 65g of green beans per batch, little less than half a cup (which was what Sweet Maria's had recommended) and kept decreasing per batch down to about 40g. Even that amount of beans required constant agitation on my part to get any motion happening, until about first crack, when the beans began swirling on their own.

-The roast seemed to happen INSANELY quickly. First crack occurred at 1:30 or less (in one batch, it happened at around 1:00) and by about 4:00 (or about 3:30 in that one extreme batch), second crack had started. Given the times I was expecting, which were based on what I had read, I thought maybe I was too inexperienced to tell what second crack was and I had vastly underroasted the beans but no: based both on color and taste, the beans were def at/past City, and I could even taste (a small amount of) char in the coffee.

-So, what's going on here: is my popper running way too hot? Or perhaps not providing enough airflow (as the lack of swirl implies)? Were the honey-processed beans simply too heavy? Am I missing something? Re: the popper's heat, the plastic top seemed to warp a little after only that one evening of use, which seemed a little crazy to me--tho I did roast 6 batches consecutively.

I'm grateful for any and all advice/feedback/critiques. Thanks!
Edited by natchez on 05/25/2021 2:15 PM
 
renatoa
You have an airflow issue, fan/turbine or motor.
This could explain both symptoms: no swirl, and too hot air = too short roast.

To prove this assumption, try throwing inside a dozen of popcorn beans, they must be ejected outside by a normal popper airflow.
 
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